Recognizing the critical need to bring evidence-based HIV/AIDS prevention programs to communities where women are at highest risk for infection, the National AIDS Fund, in partnership with Johnson & Johnson, today announced the second set of grants to address the unique needs of women and girls susceptible to contracting HIV/AIDS. The announcement was made in connection with the second annual National Women and Girls HIV/AIDS Awareness Day (March 10th).
Under the program, GENERATIONS II: Strengthening Women and Families Affected by HIV/AIDS, the new grantswill support nine community-based organizations that are developing innovative interventions or adapting proven prevention models for specific populations of women and girls at high-risk for infection. The grants will reach the most vulnerable and hard to reach populations including African-American and Latina women who do not perceive themselves to be at risk for HIV, homeless and runaway girls, injection drug users and incarcerated women.
The new grants build onthe earlier work of the pioneering partnership between the National AIDS Fund and Johnson & Johnson, launched in 2005 in response to the alarming escalation of HIV/AIDS infection among women in the United States, and named to recognize women’s roles in anchoring the lives around them.
“The physical, emotional, financial and social tolls of HIV/AIDS are profound for all women,” said Kandy Ferree, president and chief executive officer of the National AIDS Fund. “However, there are certain groups whose needs are often overlooked especially in the U.S., where the epidemic is often mistakenly considered under control and it is our hope that these grants will make great strides in reducing new HIV infections and empowering the most vulnerable women among us.”
A Growing Threat to Women’s and Family Health
In the U.S., the percentage of women diagnosed with HIV/AIDS has more than tripled since 1985. Girls between the ages of 13 and 19 now represent 57 percent of new HIV infections1, and infection rates are also exceptionally high among minority populations. Women of color account for 80 percent of all women estimated to be living with AIDS2.
A generational “ripple effect” takes place when a woman is infected with or affected by HIV/AIDS. Many women are solely responsible for the care and financial support of children and other family members, which may prevent them from taking care of themselves. Further, orphaned children will need care from extended family or foster parents.
“Around the world, women are becoming the face of HIV/AIDS,” said Sharon D’Agostino, vice president, Corporate Contributions and Community Relations at Johnson & Johnson. “With the National AIDS Fund, we are committed to identifying evidence-based interventions that will effectively prevent HIV infection among at-risk populations of women and girls in the U.S. and to helping replicate these models nationwide in hopes of turning the tide against the feminization of AIDS.”
New Grants Build on Earlier Success
Historically, many evidence-based intervention programs have focused on men or a small percentage of minority women, but the GENERATIONS program is unique in its scope and approach to the needs of women. GENERATIONS II grants will make possible a broad range of evidence-based prevention programs that will be closely monitored and evaluated for replication in other areas and high-risk groups. The following projects will receive support through 2009:
– Asian Pacific AIDS Intervention Team (APAIT), Los Angeles, CA APAIT will adapt a culturally and linguistically appropriate prevention intervention program for monolingual Mandarin and Cantonese-speaking immigrant women working in massage parlors.
– Centerforce, San Rafael, CA Through Live, Love & Learn, peer health educators will conduct outreach to women visiting incarcerated loved ones at San Quentin State Prison to reduce the incidence of HIV infection when their male partners, who could be HIV-positive, are released.
– Women Organized to Respond to Life-Threatening Diseases (WORLD), Oakland, CA African-American and Latina women and girls will receive HIV education and risk reduction interventions from HIV-positive women who serve as models of taking control of one’s life and relationships.
– Positive Impact, Atlanta, GA Project PREPARE (Persons Readying to Exit Prison Able Ready and Empowered) will conduct workshops on condom negotiation, building self-esteem, and prevention of physical, sexual, and substance abuse for incarcerated women in a pre-release program.
– Alternatives for Girls, Detroit, MI The Street Smart HIV prevention intervention will provide sexual health education to homeless and runaway girls, addressing rape prevention, gender and power dynamics and violence within relationships.
– North Jersey Community Research Initiative (NJCRI), Newark, NJ NJCRI’s “Women Count!” program will target urban African-American women with injection drug-using partners, combining group HIV/AIDS prevention education workshops with risk reduction activities.
– Gaston County Health Department, Gastonia, NC My Children, My Sisters, Myself, a workshop series focusing on women’s roles as family health gatekeepers will help low-income women explore relationships, gain HIV knowledge, and acquire negotiation and empowerment skills.
– Helping Individual Prostitutes Survive (HIPS), Washington, D.C. Through the Street Sense project, HIPS will adapt an existing intervention to help African-American sex workers reduce drug use and sex-related risky behaviors.
– La Cl?nica del Pueblo, Washington, D.C. Latina women at risk for violence within their relationships will participate in Entre Amigas, an intervention program addressing sexual health and domestic violence prevention.
About National AIDS Fund
It is the mission of the National AIDS Fund to reduce the incidence and impact of HIV/AIDS by promoting leadership and generating resources for effective community responses to the epidemic. Through a growing network of 31 state and local funding collaboratives its Community Partnerships the Fund provides grants and technical support to over 400 community-based organizations annually; the Fund has raised and invested over $134 million since 1988 for the fight against HIV/AIDS in the United States. Please visit aidsfund for additional information.
About Johnson & Johnson
Johnson & Johnson is the world’s most comprehensive and broadly based manufacturer of health care products, as well as a provider of related services, for the consumer, pharmaceutical, and medical devices and diagnostics markets. The more than 200 Johnson & Johnson operating companies employ approximately 122,000 men and women and sell products throughout the world. Through its philanthropy, Johnson & Johnson currently supports more than 100 HIV/AIDS programs around the world, with a focus on partnering with communities to prevent infection and to support women in caring for their families.
Johnson & Johnson